Organisation of Master Trainers (OMaT) is a team of well-trained, qualified and experienced facilitators and community mobilisers working for a Sierra Leone with a culture of democracy and improved respect for civic and human rights. The members are representatives of the fourteen geographical districts in Sierra Leone, including the Western Area. The organisation was founded in December 2002, but has been working since 2000.
Management Systems International (MSI), a Washington DC consultancy firm, provided the training for the Masters Trainers in facilitation skills and Participatory Rural Appraisal training methodology for the implementation of a Youth Reintegration Training and Education for Peace, and the Nation Building Program which was founded by USAID. These programs lasted for 4 1/2 years.
The formation of OMaT following the civil war in Sierra Leone was a response to the country's need for a human resource team with the requisite knowledge and skills to contribute meaningfully to restore peace through strengthening democratic ethos, good governance and promote development.
OMaT believes that accomplishing its vision is challenging but possible. The organisation is therefore committed to:
- Creating a society where citizens are empowered with the required knowledge to actively engage top political leaders both in the local and national governance structure;
- Creating a forum where citizens debate alongside their leaders on governance issues;
- Effecting change in the level or percentage of women's participation in both local and national political matters;
- Enhancing the institutional capacity and effectiveness of civil societies and grassroots organisations;
- Collaborating with governmental, national and international non-governmental (NGOs) in the effort to promote democratic values, good governance and the sustainability of peace in Sierra Leone and other post-conflict societies;
- Promoting an increased awareness of civic and human rights and the importance of respecting them;
- Fostering an increased awareness of appropriate ways to conserve the environment;
- Raising general awareness on the reality and cost of HIV/AIDS on human resources and its implications for economic growth and health.
- Governance is the business of rulers and their team;
- Government is the sole protector of human rights;
- Politics and governance are the business of men.
The Master Trainers have undergone intensive training in the following areas:
- Large and small group facilitation skills;
- Effective communication skills;
- Problem solving skills;
- Conflict management and negotiation skills;
- Problem solving skills;
- Coaching and mentoring skills;
- Time management and planning skills.
OMaT have travelled nationwide conducting workshops for 21 days of every month which resulted in the reintegration of 17,960 ex-combatants, RUF, SLA, Civil militia and war-affected youth at 3,500 different sites throughout Sierra Leone.